Free Markets, Free People

More first hand coverage from Honduras

My colleague in Honduras, who sent me the material I posted yesterday, is back with more today. He’s also fine with using his real name. So please welcome Hector Figueroa for this guest post at QandO, with photos and news from yesterday’s march. (You may click on the thumbnail photos below for full-size versions.)

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Hi Billy,

Aside from have heavy-normal work day here, I managed to be at this march for support to our new authorities. This march went on at larger cities around the country. Unlike the previous government, which ordered its employees to stop working and go march, these were the lucky that managed to leave work and be there.

I’ll grant CNN that they do have these aerials on their site.

Mine, of course, were a bit to be more terrestrial. And to me, it went as far as the I could see. Sorry for the size, this way you have both big and small.

HondurasMarch1Reduced

Por esto luchamos unidos. Mel y Chavez fuera!
For this we fight (the book is our Democratic/Republican/Representative Constitution). Mel and Chavez, get out!

HondurasMarch2Reduced

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Rich & Poor, Young & Old, Workers & Execs, Civilians & Military, Teachers & Students. WE ARE ALL UNITED!!!

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Every street was packed.

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Our newly appointed President and our hero, Armed Forces Commander.

{I did an extract from this photo showing more detail of the new president, Roberto Micheletti.}

HondurasMarchNewPresident

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Thanks to Hector for furnishing us with this first-hand account. I continue to hope for a resolution to this political crisis that reflects the wishes and needs of the Honduran people.

I would be suspicious of any political figure backed by the UN, Hugo Chavez, and Obama, when the people of his nation are mustering the sort of opposition shown above. It pains me to see Chavez threatening the use of force, especially since he probably perceives that neither we nor the UN will do anything about it if he does.

The UN has passed a resolution insisting that Zelaya be returned to office. Given the kind of opposition shown above, I think that was a short-sighted action. I consider the Obama administration’s position to be short-sighted as well, but given their record to date, it’s not surprising.

My own opinion, guided by my preference to believe my colleague on the scene (and other analysts and witnesses) over political and media hacks, is that removal of Zelaya was justified. I hope the Obama state department and various functionaries at the UN look more closely at Honduran law and re-evaluate their position. I’d particularly like to see a firm warning to Chavez to butt out.

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11 Responses to More first hand coverage from Honduras

  •  
    Just to add a little from Honduras…love the photos you’ve posted.
    REPORT FROM HONDURAS:

    So far, the news seems OK. Few problems, business and commerce more or less
    normal. Coffee, bananas, and clothing shipping out like normal. President
    Micheletti has named a very qualified cabinet, much more qualified and
    experienced than ex-President Mel Zelaya had.which was packed with cronies
    and family members. Not much rioting here, not to say it has been trouble
    free. Bloodless, at least so far. (Pray for us!).

    The new Foreign Minister, Enrique Ortez Colindre, served as Ambassador in
    France, and also as UN Ambassador. The Finance Minister, Gabriela Nunez was
    head of the Central Bank in a previous administration, and spent a year in
    Washington in the World Bank. I’ve met her, and heard her talk. She seems
    very bright.

    Today, over 20,000 peaceful demonstrators marched for Rule of Law,
    Constitution, and AGAINST the return of Mel Zelaya in Tegucigalpa’s Central
    Park while Zelaya himself was playing victim in front of a bored looking UN
    Assembly.

    Tomorrow, as I understand it, President Micheletti will travel to the US
    seeking support. All Honduras hopes he gets it.
    But I have to recognize that we’re in a delicate situation, and will be for
    some time to come.

    But Hondurans are intelligent, and hard working, and with decent management
    capable of pulling us up from a corrupt, third world abyss.
    I’d like to think the process has begun.

  • If the legitimate Honduran government is overthrown, it will be a tragedy that is on the hands of the UN and the Obama administration.  There is no way that they do not know what is really happening there, and thus the display of antipathy towards the Honduran country and its people is deliberate.

  • Sorry but, I expect that ousting this idiot will end up doing far more harm than good.  Once he is returned to power, hopefully peacefully, posibly with Venisualian military support, worst case as a joint operation between Obama and Hugo, all of those in the cabinet will end up in prison at best.  This will be the excuse that the idiot will use to nationalize free enterprise and criminalize oposition.  Hugo probably would be gone by now if it weren’t for the coup early in his term.  We have to stop giving these Marxists excuses for their failures, ugh poor Honduras.  Even if new elections were held today, and the idiot were to lose fair and square the improvised elections would not be constitutional, the very thing we are trying to preserve.
    If he had remained in power, holding crazy grabs at power he would not have been allowed to run again.  If he did and we could not field a sane canidate who could beat him then we deserve to lose.

  • So we do exist. Today Israel and Taiwan have expressed that do recognize our new current Government as legitimate. Great news!
    If some can understand what is happening to us it would be these two countries. Thank you Israel! Thank you Taiwan!
    Unfortunately, we don’t exist for the President of the country which we though would understand what democracy really is, Mr Obama. Is there any way for us to grab his attention for a second so that he can get facts strait? That there was no Military Coup here. That we would not allow it?

  • The problem in Honduras can be briefly described this way:
    –          Three and half years ago, the Ex President won by a tiny margin in the lowest vote ever in this country’s history. I voted for him L
    –          During his first years he bought Harley Davidson bike, Thoroughbreds, took rides on the Air Force’s F5s, turned the Marriott’s Presidential Suite into a Honeymoon Suite with a different woman per week, but regularly with Patricia Rodas (his Chancellor). In other words, he began living his Mid-Life-Crisis publicly. This is well documented in the local newspapers.
    –          He continuously chose week strategies or actions; thus, polarizing the society in barren discussions that he never won, yet invested massive funds into them as campaigns. I’m not sure why he kept doing this (strategy or error), but the fact is he polarized us to max. He meant to implement a “No driving day per week for cars” that would only hurt the poor in practice. He tried to change the airport to a US military base (used for Drug traffic control mostly) (hoping to replace it), but then realized that it need an incredibly expensive road first. Things like these made us turn him into the office joke of the day, permanently. (He also gave us bad luck in soccer matches J. Soccer is the mainstream religion of Honduras.)
    –          He created his personal TV “news” channel, just like Hugo Chavez (where did he get the money?). He also created his own News Paper which we all got daily “for free” at our door step (no subscription required). He managed to miraculously turn his worst media critics into his best friends over night. What are we suppose to think about this? That they’re stupid? Cause we aren’t. Well, not that much.
    –          He adopted unharmonized measures like the drastic rising of minimum wage. This did not affect large business like he meant, because they were already paying more than that. It did kill a bunch of small and medium business raising the jobless claims. This hurt him more than anyone, since he had not pondered on how much that would be for government employees. Ironically he did manage to capitalize on this. His followers argue that “he raised the minimum wage”, but in reality, this was the first government that didn’t raise minimum wage yearly, instead, he waited until his last year.
    –          Mel Zelaya did not present a budget to Congress for this year like our Constitution mandates (every October of the previous year). Not presenting a budget for approval by Congress, an yet spending funds is a crime according to our Constitution. He was not releasing funds to Congress for administrative spending, nor other entities, hoping to suffocate them until they agreed with his terms. This was like having a four year old in the Presidency!
    –          About two years ago, the DEA was following a few cars traveling with diplomatic plates coming from Panama. At their arrival to Honduras (quick stop before continuing to Guatemala) they stopped in front of Hondutel to check with Marcelo Chimirri (CEO of Hondutel and Ex Presidents best friend), but saw themselves surrounded by DEA and InterPol, so they opened fire and escaped in hail of bullets. They quickly headed To Marcelo Chimirri’s home for refuge. The Police had to go back for a Court order to go in, but quickly the Ex President ordered them to back down. Chimirri’s best defense was based on secretly taped Telephone conversations between corrupt politicians and media casters of which he posted sections on YouTube.com. So far Chimirri has not gone to a real trial over any of this, but it seems like the new Government will process him finally..
    –          Hondurans are certain that Chimirri and Mel Zelaya controlled drug trafficking in Honduras. Ever since Zelaya befriended Hugo Chavez, the DEA captures one or more airplanes per week from Venezuela with tons of Cocain. The Pilot is mysteriously not found or “escapes” from jail in few days.
    –          During Chavez’s visits to Honduras, he openly calls us “PitiYanquis” (his specially made up insult to us). In this country, the main income is from workers in the USA who send money home. So we all have family or close friends in the US. Is does not make us happy to see this JackAss (Hugo Chavez) stand at our Presidential House to insult the US and ourselves, laughing with his arm around our Ex President. In this country there is no way a Marxist Presidential candidate could ever win unless he does what Mel Zelaya did: Deceit !!! He tricked the whole Honduran society and mounted the most corrupt Government we’ve ever had. BTW, according to the UN, Hugo Chavez has The most corrupt Government in the continent.
    –          In this country we’ve never seen the massive amounts of campaign (propaganda) funds that these two have spent. And never had we seen a campaign fail so miserably. The more money Hugo spent on Zelaya, the more Hondurans hated him (except for those he paid directly or were offered positions once they achieved absolute power).
    This I leave for last, because its most important:
    –          In this country of scarce resources (where donations are vital), never had we seen such display of economic power like Mel and Chavez. They will share no expense and use all means to achieve total control. So when Patricia Janiot from CNN interviews our Officials and asks them why they didn’t put him on trial, they can’t say this, but I can, with this question: ¿How do you put a man with unlimited cash on hand, corrupt as he is, in a poor country, on trial? Hondurans believe that if this “man” got to spend one more day in the country there would have been a blood bath between us. Like Hugo Chavez, he is an expert in dividing people against each other. As the great majority, we simply had no choice. I question again; Would you send a Police car with two cops to have Osama Bin laden arrested? Do you think that would work? Or would you send your Armed Forces by any chance?
     
    Finally: This Continent’s Presidents befriend each other at the same parties. But they don’t know the people that their colleagues supposedly represent. They only get to see the people through the eyes and mouths of themselves and the ambassadors that work for them. It’s logical that they will defend their Executive Power buddies this way. It doesn’t hurt them at all to dance a little with Hugo Chavez. In this sense, Congress and Supreme Court are much more representative of the People.   
     
    Hondurans believe that CNN and Mr. Obama are playing dirty to us. This is because they don’t live here. With all due respect, I beg you to explain this to them.

  • REPORT from HONDURAS, Wed 1 July, 8:00pm CST
    I understand world concerns about the way things were changed in Honduras, arrest of a duly elected President  at 5:00am for an exile flight to Costa Rica, etc.
    It sounds Un American.
    But irregularities and the extra-presidential actions of Zelaya merited no less.
    He surrounded himself with bodyguards, thugs really. He attended ONLY to his personal wishes. He was derelict to duty, for example withholding appropriated funds for towns and cities that did not support his illegal Fourth Urn, the same procedure Chavez and Correa already used to overturn their own Constitutions in Venezuela and Ecuador, respectively. He sequestered funds to repair dikes along the rivers around San Pedro Sula. He sequestered funds to mitigate some of the recent earthquake damage in the northern part of Honduras. Fortunately, with our new, nascent Government, these glaring problems are already being funded.
    Today, they discovered cash hidden in the former Presidents house. Sixty million Lempiras per the report, about US$ 3 million. Quite a large stash, obviously for payments outside normal procedures. Similarly, large amounts were found in Rixi Moncada’s apart hotel. A member of Zelaya’s family, she was the head of the Federally owned Electric Company. It really smells bad. It was bad. Zelaya was intent on delivering us to Socialism, and Cuban, Venezuelan, and Ecuadorian advisers were working with Zelaya and select rural offices. We suspect plenty of arms were being smuggled into Honduras to fund a popular uprising.
    The “Coup” was bloodless. A miracle, it seems to me. We had an emergency. Procedures were certainly as legal as could be expected, considering all branches of a Democratic Government reached agreement, over the course of several days of deliberation.
    Honduras today, well my wife and I went shopping in the center of Tegucigalpa. We encountered no problems. Things are returning to normal, it seems.
    To rid us of Zelaya was a blessing to all Hondurans. To reimpose him on him would be a Disaster.
    For what it’s worth, Israel and Taiwan today extended Diplomatic Recognition to the new Government. Happily, the USA decided NOT to recall their Ambassador, Hugo Lorens, a brilliant American bi-lingual PhD lawyer.
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    The new Foreign Minister, Enrique Ortez Colindre, served as Ambassador in France, and also as UN Ambassador. The Finance Minister, Gabriela Nunez was head of the Central Bank in a previous administration, and spent a year in Washington in the World Bank. I’ve met her, and heard her talk. She seems very bright.

    Like so many others, I’m asking understanding and support in maintaining legitimate Democracy here in Honduras.

    Only a handfull of activist hard core leftists seem willing to act otherwise, so far.

    Really, I’m proud to be in Honduras today.

  • Hector, good luck trying to get Obama and the US media to listen to you.
     
    They have their story and you will be forced to live with it.
     
    Obama is way too busy trying to suck up to Chavez, Ortega and Castro and appologize for every real or mostly imagined evil that the US is responsible for.
     

  • Hector,
    Outstanding analysis!. Keep on writing. It adds dimension to so many others… hoping to be heard.
     

  • Just an observation… President Micheletti marched into a mob of 20,000+ demonstrators in the Liberty march Tuesday in the center of Tegucigalpa. No bodyguards, small groups of attacking left wingers not far away. Does this show dedication? Insanity? Balls? or what. Vive Honduras Libre!

  • Amen –  Viva Honduras!  A bright spot in a dreary leftist world.
    God Speed.